Washington Redskins' cornerback Josh Norman has not held back when discussing President Donald Trump's controversial statements regarding NFL players kneeling during the national anthem.
"Just telling you right now, this man is not welcome here in Washington, D.C.," the former All-Pro defensive back told our affiliate WJLA following the Redskins' win over the Oakland Raiders Sunday night.
"I hope he don’t be around when I see him," Norman added.
Players from both Washington and Oakland joined with players around the league in demonstrating during the national anthem after Trump's comments saying that NFL players who kneel during the anthem should be fired.
At the White House Monday, spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said the president believes Americans should respect the flag.
"This should be something we can all get behind," Sanders said.
Norman called the statements Trump made at a rally in Huntsville, Alabama on Friday "disrespectful" and "appalling."
"How you call somebody an SOB?" Norman asked reporters. "How you call somebody that? That’s their right to do."
Norman locked arms with teammates and Redskins' owner Dan Snyder in a display of unity as the anthem was sung at FedEx Field. Norman said Trump made it "personal" by going after NFL players.
"Nobody is divided in this," he said. "We was in unity, we wanted to stand for something."
"You mess with one, you mess with us all," Norman added.
The Redskins' corner said he was especially mindful of the fact that young people look up to athletes like him.
"I think as a man in this country you have to stand for something," he said.
The act of kneeling or raising a fist during the national anthem has drawn criticism from many and has been called disrespectful. Norman says that is not what his actions are about.
"I respect the office (of the President) , I respect the troops of America," Norman told reporters. "My family fought in a war and like I said before, it’s not about the flag. It’s not. It’s not about anything like that. It’s not about black and white. It’s about what we are being faced with right now."
<div class="mv-widget" data-widget="poll" data-id="dFk0bqki2Z8q-Zm7oFC7RQIlJN8" data-width="100%" data-height="auto"></div>
<script src="//d6launbk5pe1s.cloudfront.net/widget.js" async></script>
This report was provided by Stephen Pimpo Jr. and Brad Bell of ABC7.